Scrapbook is a place for all things connected in one way or another to Newton Brett's artistic life. Please scroll down to read and view.
A sketch of Brett at work, in Jamaica, West Indies. His daughter, Joanne Sibley, a well-known portrait painter in her own right, recalled the day in the 1960's: "I had just returned home and found him painting in our open garage and I got my paints out and did a quick oil sketch of him."
A sketch by Brett's fellow artist and colleague, Percy Edgar, showing the hustle and bustle of a busy day at the Brigden's of Winnipeg studio, c. 1920's/1930's.
A second sketch by Brett's fellow artist and colleague, Percy Edgar, showing the hustle and bustle of a busy day at the Brigden's of Winnipeg studio, c. 1920's/1930's.
The front of the Brigdens of Winnipeg corporate Christmas card, 1931.
A close view of the motif on the front page of the Brigdens of Winnipeg corporate Christmas card, 1931. The rendering suggests a lino-cut or wood-cut original.
A reproduction of a Frederick H. Brigden watercolour, "The Batchewana Hills, Algoma", on the inside page of the Brigdens of Winnipeg corporate Christmas card, 1931. Brigden was the son of the founder, a fine painter, and the first director of the firm's Winnipeg office.
A small company logo on the back page of the Brigdens of Winnipeg corporate Christmas card, 1931.
Downtown Winnipeg in 1912, as it looked two years before Newton Brett joined Brigdens of Winnipeg. The firm's main source of business was the Eaton's Department Store, opened in 1905, and seen here dominating the right foreground. Known locally as "the big store", it contained 701,888 square feet of retail space. (photo source: PAM-Winnipeg Streets Collection-N14380)
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Some of the various ways Newton Brett signed his paintings.
The Founding of Fort Victoria, 1843, by Newton Brett, was commissioned by the Hudson's Bay Company to illustrate the 1943 HBC calendar. Charles Comfort did the illustrations for the 1941 and 1942 calendars. (Photo source: Hudson's Bay Company History Foundation. https://www.hbcheritage.ca/places/places-other-institutions/victoria)
In the photo,the owner describes his father displaying Brett's painting(NB446): "(My father)was given as a parting gift by his co-workers from the Imperial Oil Refinery (just outside of Winnipeg) back in 1959. It was always on display in the living room of the several homes that we lived in as my parents got transferred several times. It has gone from Winnipeg to Dartmouth Nova Scotia to Montreal and then after my parents passed away it went on to Toronto and finally in Kitchener. It has been continuously on display for all to enjoy and appreciate for the last 62 years." Oftentimes, Brett's paintings have ended up in Canada, the United States or otherwise. The current locations and owners are unknown. Brett did not keep records of the owners and sales.
Brett revisited a favorite composition, using watercolour and oil (left and middle). A new variation in the 3rd oil painting (right), he adds a different colour palette and pictorial elements as a sailboat and a cabin on the point.
A photo study (left) for NB 134The Hired Hand (right). The photo print was found in Brett's files.
He may have utilised a large format camera, a useful tool for recording portraits. The subject is unknown. As a young boy, Brett experienced prairie farming in the 1890's. He may have known familiar acquaintances or neighbours around the family farm, where he visited closeby to Winnipeg.